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Construction starts on new radiation lab




Construction has started at Windsor Regional Hospital on a fourth (4th) Linear Accelerator (LINAC) to conduct radiation procedures for Windsor Regional Cancer Centre patients. 

 

The project was given the green light to proceed to tender in January 2023 by the Ontario government. 


According to a media release from Windsor Regional Hospital (WRH), they perform approximately 30,000 radiation procedures annually.


“The goal is to get the fourth LINAC up and running by late fall 2024. Once up and running, over the subsequent 36 months, we will replace each of the existing three radiation machines. At least three of the LINACs will be in operation, and for some months all four will be in operation, until all are replaced,” the release states.


“This is great news for our region and once again thanks to the Ford government for pressing ahead with a project that was first promised over a decade ago but was not acted upon until they gave the green light to proceed,” stated David Musyj, president and CEO Windsor Regional Hospital.


During a meeting of the WRH board of directors last Thursday evening, Musyj said they have been waiting for the project for over a decade and it was the fourth linear accelerator, or commonly known as a radiation machine. There are three currently at the Windsor Regional Cancer Centre.


“Because of the demands and needs, a fourth was talked about, was talked about and was talked about,” he said.


Musyj said the province said, “we’re done talking” and gave the funding. After an RFP process, construction began Monday. He said the fourth needs to be started so they can start the other three, as WRH doesn’t want to go below three linear accelerators at any given time.


The long-term goal is to replace the three current radiation machines and run four overall. He thanked the province for “making this happen,” adding there should be news soon about a catherization lab.


“Some might say, why are you doing this now? Why not wait for the new hospital,” Musyj said. “We need this now. We needed this a decade ago, to get this up and running. There are patients who need this service now.”


The new structure is being build and will be attached to the current building along Kildare Ave. in Windsor.


Musyj thanked the Windsor-Essex community for advocating for this, the WRH board and the province. He said there have been a lot of meetings over the radiation machine, catheterization lab and new hospital and all “are going to happen,” he said.


In the province’s announcement in 2023, the government noted it is investing approximately $30 million in the current hospital to connect people with improved treatments for patients with cancer and cardiovascular disease. This funding will make it easier for more patients in the Windsor-Essex Region to be diagnosed and treated closer to home.


“Our government is giving Windsor Regional Hospital the funds it needs to provide the best possible care to patients in the region while we work towards building a new and modern hospital,” said Sylvia Jones, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “This means that patients in the area will no longer have to travel far distances to receive treatment, leading to faster care and improved quality of life.”


Windsor Regional Hospital will use this investment to renovate its cardiac catheterization lab, which is where patients receive angiograms, angioplasties and other minimally invasive cardiac tests and procedures.


In addition, the province stated at the time the investment will enable the hospital to expand its cancer centre to accommodate the new linear accelerator, which provides cancer patients with necessary radiation therapy treatment.

 

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